Hottest day of heatwave prompts over 500 fire brigade interventions in Brussels
Friday, 26 July 2019
Credit: Gabriela Galindo/The Brussels Times
The Brussels fire department had to intervene over 500 interventions in the single day of Thursday, a hike in comparison to recent years with “clear” links to the scorching temperatures brought on by the heatwave, according to a department spokesperson.
Out of the total 526 interventions carried out by the fire department on the hottest day of the heatwave, an overwhelming majority (406) were for medical reasons.
But from dried out and crumbling façades to people trapped in elevators, the hottest day of the heatwave resulted in a particularly busy day for Brussels firemen, according to Bruzz.
By comparison, on the same date last year, the brigade was called to intervene 233 times — representing a hike which Walter Derieuw, spokesperson for the fire department, says is directly linked to the record-temperatures the country has known in recent days.
“There are, for example, a number of interventions for façade sections that are in danger of falling because the building materials are so dried out by the heat that they come loose,” Derieuw said, according to the outlet.
“Even people who become trapped in an elevator call the fire brigade much faster in this heat,” he said, adding that they were right to do so.
Out of the total interventions made on Thursday, 120 were carried out for non-medical reasons, including fires, damaged buildings and façades or even trees at risk of falling due to dry soils.
“We certainly have the impression that it is much busier this summer at the 112 [hotline] than the past summers,” he added.